Track-Cross County Coach, 1972-77
Inducted February 22, 1997
Chuck Hunsaker turned in a spectacular record as the coach of the SMS track and cross country teams from 1972 until 1977. A native of Lima, Ohio, he came to SMS in the fall of 1972 from the University of Cincinnati and guided SMS to five MIAA cross country championships and four finishes among the nation’s top five teams in NCAA Division II cross country competition, winning a national championship in 1974. The Bears were the national runner-up in Division II in 1973, finished first in 1974, took fourth in 1975, finished second in 1976 and were 11th in 1977 under Hunsaker. During Hunsaker’s tenure, the Bears hosted the NCAA Division II national championship in Springfield in 1974 and 1976. Hunsaker produced 10 SMS NCAA Division II cross country All-Americans during his tenure with the Bears, including Ken Norton and Rick Garver in 1973, Dan Dwyer and John Prasuhn in both 1974 and 1975, Prasuhn, Rick Callison and Howie Orndoff in 1976 and Nigel Martin in 1977. Norton won the MIAA individual championship in 1973, Prasuhn won the 1974 league title, Dwyer claimed the 1975 crown, and Prasuhn came back to win it in 1977. The Bears’ Division II track All-Americans during Hunsaker’s years included both Norton and Prasuhn in the three-mile run in 1974, Ron DeClue in the mile run in 1975, Dwyer as the NCAA Division II national champion in both the 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter runs in 1976, Prasuhn in the 5,000-meter run in 1976, Orndoff in the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 1976, and John Gianini in the shot put in 1977. SMS individual MIAA champions under Hunsaker included shot putter Fred Tabron and hurdler Earl Turley in 1973; Tabron in the shot put and Norton in the two-mile run in 1974 in both the indoor and outdoor league meets; Tabron in the discus in 1974; high jumper John Northrip, triple jumper Mark Daye, John Tideman in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and Dwyer in the three-mile run in 1975; pole vaulter Randy Stock and two-miler Dwyer indoors and Dwyer in the three-mile run and six-mile run and Orndoff in the steeplechase outdoors in 1976; and Bill Baker in the javelin, Ray Pritchett in the long jump and Prasuhn in the 5,000-meter run in 1977. While at SMS, Hunsaker was honored with district Coach of the Year honors four times in cross country and once in track while receiving two national Coach of the Year selections in cross country. Nominated to be distance coach for the 1976 U. S. Olympic team, he served as president of the national Cross Country Coaches Association the same year. He has been elected to the Track Halls of Fame in Ohio and Missouri as well as the Athletic Hall of Fame at his undergraduate alma mater, Capital University. Hunsaker left SMS in 1977 to accept a direct commission into the U. S. Army and to establish the women’s track and cross country program at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Hunsaker completed 20 years of active service in the Army Adjutant General Corps in 1997.